Congregational Research Services

Why Do a Mission Study?

A Mission Study is an excellent tool to clarify who you are as a church, articulate what you stand for, explore why you operate the way you do and guide you in making decisions and setting goals for future ministry. Throughout this study, strive to:

  1. Focus on the positive and shaped by gratefulness to God and to each other.
  2. Share stories of life-giving forces within the history and experience of your congregation, in which people share times when they felt most alive, most motivated, and most excited.
  3. Imagine the shape of a preferred future, developing “provocative proposals,” finding common themes about “what might be” and shared images for a preferred future.
  4. Explore new and creative ways to manifest these imaginative futures.

4 “Do-It-Yourself” Research Strategies for Church Improvement

To help congregational leaders understand more about their church and its needs, the Presbyterian Mission Agency “do-it-yourself” research strategies for positive church improvement. These tools are particularly helpful if your congregation is conducting a mission study, preparing to call a new pastor or working on a long-range plan.

  1. Church Trends in Your Congregation: See how things have been changing in your congregation through a statistical summary based on the Session Annual Statistical Reports submitted to the Office of the General Assembly.
  2. Demographic Report: Learn about the people who live in the community around your church. The Demographic Report can help your congregation identify mission and outreach possibilities.
  3. Congregational Surveys: A survey can be used to build on your congregation’s unique strengths and give your congregation a picture of membership including:
    • Age
    • Marital status
    • Average length of church membership
    • Strengths and priorities of church programs
    • Tools for strategic planning
  4. Research Strategies for Congregations: A packet of easy information gathering tools designed to help you learn more about your worshipers and your local community.


MissionInsite is a mission study/demographic program.  New Castle Presbytery maintains a contract with MissionInsite to provide complimentary demographic forecasting to member churches to discover your ministry opportunities.

Please contact the Presbytery office to request information to obtain a log-on for this service.

Why use  MissionInsite Community Engagement for Faith & NonProfit Groups?
      • Obtain instant access to community information for your church via the PeopleView System.
      • Locate church members and others affiliated with your church through a mapping system called PeoplePlot.
      • Access for New Castle Presbytery churches is free with unlimited access to a system with powerful discovery tools for church ministry, church planting, church growth and outreach.